[Latin Bible]. Manuscript on vellum.
[Paris, c.1250]. (Prothro B-01)
This thirteenth-century manuscript is a fine example of the “Paris Vulgate” tradition, established in the late twelfth century when theologians at the University of Paris compiled a highly authoritative recension of St. Jerome’s Latin Bible. Whereas earlier Bibles almost invariably had appeared in multiple volumes, with the books in no canonical sequence, thirteenth-century Parisian scriptoria began producing single-volume manuscripts of the new Paris Vulgate in unprecedented quantities. Intended for individual rather than institutional use, these portable Bibles were often richly illuminated. In this manuscript, eighty initials illuminated with biblical scenes introduce the various books of the Bible, including the Six Days of Creation in the initial “I” beginning Genesis 1:1.